130 arrested after cycling procession on Olympic Route Network
More than 130 people were arrested last night for defying a ban on cycling in the Olympic Route Network (ORN), the Met Police has said.
The group were held for breaching section 12 of the Public Order Act following a procession.
A spokesman for the Met said officers were aware that a monthly cycle procession was due to take place yesterday and made several attempts to meet with the riders to discuss their plans.
Police said the procession usually attracts approximately 100 cyclists, but on this occasion around 400 to 500 people gathered near Waterloo at around 6pm.
The Met applied conditions under section 12 of the Public Order Act, as the force believed the procession had the “potential to cause serious disruption to the life of the community”.
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The conditions were to not commence the procession before 6pm on July 27 and to end no later than 3am on July 28; to not enter any part of the ORN; to remain south of the River Thames at all times; and to keep moving unless stopped or directed by police, or due to traffic signals.
The police spokesman said: “The participants moved off from approximately 6.30pm and from the outset they attempted to cross the Thames, despite attempts by officers to prevent them.
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“Officers also made several attempts to remind the participants of the conditions under section 12 which were in place and that breaches of them may result in arrest. They did this using loud hailers and leaflets to explain the conditions and the consequences of any breaches.
“The procession split into smaller groups and some of them crossed to the north of the River. They travelled to the Stratford area, where there were large numbers of people and vehicles due to the Olympic opening ceremony.
“Cyclists continued to ride around the ORN, despite numerous warnings and officers took action to detain the cyclists and over 130 people were arrested for breach of section 12 of the Public Order Act.”